Two agencies identify some information they want to exchange. They find an existing IEPD that serves their purposes and want to use it. What are the steps after that to make it happen?
Subject matter experts from the agencies participating in the exchange must first convene with the sole objective of gathering requirements for the exchange at hand. It is imperative that all requirements are clearly articulated and documented. The JIEM tool is commonly used for collecting and documenting requirements specific to an exchange. Another important step toward gathering requirements is to create a domain model specific to the information included in the exchange. The domain model should explicitly illustrate all data classes, attributes, and associations that are required for the exchange.
Once all requirements have been laid out and documented the next step is to compare these requirements to the IEPD and determine if any gaps exist. In the common case that gaps are identified information must be added to the IEPD in order to meet the exchange requirements. The newly identified elements should be mapped to existing elements in the NIEM/GJXDM, so this would mean that the IEPD's subset needs to be updated to include the new elements. If the required elements cannot be mapped to elements in the NIEM/GJXDM then extensions need to be created. It is important that all extensions are created in a namespace specific to this exchange and not in the extension namespace specific to the existing IEPD.
After the IEPD has been customized to meet the requirements determined during the needs gathering exercise, each participating agency must map their data to the information in the IEPD. Mapping is a very important process that should be well-documented in order to ensure that the correct information is being included in the exchange. The next step is to explore the architectural options and tools for processing a NIEM- or GJXDM-conformant IEP.
[Reference to article #318]